Charles Darnay is the nephew of the Marquis St. Evremonde in pre-Revolutionary France, but disagrees with the French feudal system and emigrates to England, where he is falsely accuses him of being a spy. He is found innocent through the skill of Sydney Carton, an alcoholic English barrister. Darnay is supported by beautiful Lucy Manette, whom he met on the trip across the Channel, and her father, Doctor Manette, a victim of the aristocracy unjustly imprisoned for many years in the Bastille. Carton falls in love with Lucy, but she loves Darnay and subsequently marries him. Carton's love remains unrequited, but it propels him to sobriety. After Darnay is tricked into returning to France during the Reign of Terror and subsequently sentenced to death by a revolutionary tribunal, it falls to Carton to save his romantic rival's life. Written by
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[In the words of director Frank Llloyd] I met a neighbor of ours, a school teacher. I told him of my assignment to make the Dickens picture. He was very much impressed. 'What a marvelous opportunity,' he said. 'I think it a privilege to bring the works of Dickens before sixty people, and here you have the chance to bring them before sixty million.' I thought of this latter phrase, I think, all during the making of the picture. I decided it would be more discreet to bring the works of Charles Dickens before - possibly - many million people, than the work of Frank Lloyd. For that reason I followed as closely as possible the story of the book. Every historical detail was absolutely correct; all the settings were the result of careful, patient research; and the characterizations and theme of the story were transferred to the screen in such a manner as to accurately follow the author's ideas. See more
Version of A Tale of Two Cities